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You can CAREFULLY, give a brief press onto one of the schrader valves with a screwdriver to see if there's any pressure in the system.

Wear gloves just in case, but you should be alright without.

If it's empty/low on pressure, I'd say it's safe, but in the interest of the environment, it's meant to be vacuumed down beforehand if there's any amount of gas in the system.
 

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Thanks for the advice. Where would I find that valve? I am conscious of the environmental factor swell as safety so will take advice on that too. If this should be left alone even without any/much gas being present I'll leave it
One on the o/s front of the engine bay, just behind the headlight. The other on the AC pipe running along the bulkhead, nearer the n/s. Keep your face out the way when you do press down on the valve.

If you are concerned/anxious at the thought of it, then it's worth paying a garage to just vacuum down the system - can't imagine they'll charge too much.

Both covered by a black cap that looks like this:
Motor vehicle Automotive design Car Auto part Automotive exterior
 
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